Welcome back to your unofficial report on the filming of the movie version of Killers of the Flower Moon, or Gray Horse as we have been told it will be called. Nowadays the town of Pawhuska that you may have been familiar with is gone as construction continues to transform Kihekah Street into downtown Fairfax, Oklahoma in the 1920s. All of the buildings along the street have new facades in keeping with the era, telephone poles from the day have been put up and I understand they are bringing in dirt next week to line the road just like it was back in the day. I also heard that rehearsals with all the actors for the street scenes have begun on location. Although Robert De Niro was flown to California after he hurt his leg, Leonardo DiCaprio and other actors have been seen all around town. Cars and trucks from the ‘20s are everywhere along with horses and wagons and on the west side of town semi-trucks filled with props and equipment are parked on every available piece of land. This is also the area where a train depot and tracks have been constructed and original railroad cars brought in. A giant tent city has also been erected just to the south of Kihekah along Highway 60.
I can only imagine what impact all of this activity is having on local businesses as summer approaches and word about the film spreads. In another sign of Pawhuska’s increasing popularity, I recently learned that an Irish pub is opening soon downtown adding to the growth of a town that seemed empty ten years ago.
As for Ree Drummond’s Mercantile, if you want to avoid the crowds mornings Monday through Thursday are still the best times to get a table without a long wait. By 11 there is usually an hour wait, by 12 that stretches to 2 hours, and of course the wait starts even earlier on the weekends.
Despite all this, none of the folks I have spoken with have any complaints except places to stay locally are hard to come by and lots of people are ending up at hotels in Tulsa. Many of these out-of-town visitors have told me how much they enjoy learning about the history of this part of the country through trips to area museums. Woolaroc tops everyone’s list of favorite attractions and with that said, this is a great time of year to go there when all of the animals are giving birth.
The museums in Ponca City where Governor Marland made his mark, the Dalton Museum in Coffeyville and Philbrook along with Gilgrease in Tulsa also provide insights into the past and I recommend them all.
I’ve got to go now but if you want to see what a 200-million-dollar movie looks like come to Pawhuska!
Till next time if I don’t see ya there I’ll see ya down the road…